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Old Posted May 6, 2010, 10:48 PM
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sopas ej sopas ej is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: South Pasadena, California
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Today is Rudolph Valentino's birthday, who was born May 6, 1895.


His house in the Whitley Heights area of Hollywood was torn down in the early 1950s for the Hollywood Freeway, but until very recently, his last home, Falcon Lair, off of Benedict Canyon (on Bella Drive), still existed. He had purchased it in 1925, the year before he died. In the late 1980s I drove up there myself and took a picture of it (back when Doris Duke still lived there, I believe); the print is somewhere in my bedroom at my parents' house. I recently looked it up online and I was saddened to learn that the house had been drastically stripped some years ago, though the outer gate and garage still exist, or something like that. Incidentally, this property is near the Cielo Drive property that Sharon Tate and company were slaughtered at by the Manson Family.

According to the website:

Falcon Lair has changed hands once again. The gentleman who purchased Falcon Lair from the Doris Duke Estate in 1998 and began reconstruction and restoration in 2003, put the house and the surrounding property up for sale in late 2005. Apparently, as of August, 2006, the Falcon Lair and surrounding acreage have been sold.

In the 80 years since Rudolph Valentino last drove his car through the gates of Falcon Lair, very little from his time survived him. The stained glass windows, the flag, the beams in the dining room, the gorgeous oaken doors. Almost everything else inside had been remodeled so as to be unrecognizable. The floor plan remained virtually the same, but the home was forever changed.

The future of Falcon Lair is uncertain, but it is likely to be razed completely. Even if the house were not razed, Falcon Lair as Valentino knew it, will exist no more.

Falcon Lair in 1998:

Falcon Lair in 2005
"If the climate were a bank, the U.S. would have already saved it."

---Hugo Chávez
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